Lich Lord (3.5e Prestige Class)
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|“||The iron men of visage grim do more than meets the viewer’s eye. You’ve left and left and found my Tomb and now your soul will die.||”|
|—Acererak the Eternal, Half-Fiend Lich Lord|
Liches are spellcasters driven to immortality so they may further their studies. Lich lords are those who must study no longer.
Becoming a Lich Lord
Lich Lords are spellcasters who have become immortal and wish to further their knowledge of the Art.
|Special:||A prospective Lich Lord must create a phylactery using its Craft Wondrous Item feat. The phylactery costs 1,000 gp per level of the mage. After creating the phylactery, she must cast Magic Jar and permanency on it. Afterward, the mage must use the Brew Potion feat to create a potion costing 500 gp per level of the mage. Among the components must be the heart of a sentient being killed in the past three days. After it has been mixed, the following spells need to be cast on the potion: Cone of Cold, Animate Dead, and Permanency. After the preparations are complete, the mage must drink the potion on a night in which the full moon is high in the sky. After drinking the potion, she will be dead, and will rise in 1d3 days as a Lich Lord.|
|Saving Throws||Special||Spellcasting or Manifesting|
|1st||+0||+0||+0||+2||Lich Spell Preparation, Lich Transformation, Lich Familiar, Control Over Undead||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|2nd||+1||+0||+0||+3||Bestow Quest, Lich Lord Magic, Power Ritual, Wizard Bonus Feat||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|3rd||+2||+1||+1||+3||New Lich Lord Abilities||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|4th||+3||+1||+1||+4||Wizard Bonus Feat||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|5th||+3||+1||+1||+4||New Lich Lord Abilities||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|6th||+3||+1||+1||+4||Wizard Bonus Feat||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|7th||+4||+2||+2||+5||New Lich Lord Abilities||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|8th||+5||+2||+2||+5||Wizard Bonus Feat||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|9th||+6||+2||+2||+6||New Lich Lord Abilities||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|10th||+6||+3||+3||+6||Wizard Bonus Feat||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
|11th||+7||+3||+3||+7||Demilich Transformation, Sail Unfettered, New Lich Lord Abilities||+1 to existing spellcasting class|
Lich Lords gain both the Lich template, as well as many uncommon abilities. These are listed below.
Spellcasting: At each level, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one spellcasting class before becoming a Lich Lord, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.
Spells: For the purpose of spellcasting, your current spells are based on whatever your previous class required. For example, Lich Lords who were once clerics use WIS whereas those who were once wizards use INT. To cast a particular spell, you must have a Prime requisite score of at least 10 + the spell's level. Your bonus spells are based on your Prime requisite. Saves to avoid the effects of your spells have a DC of 10 + the spell's level + your Prime Requisite bonus (if any).
Lich Spell Preparation: Beginning at first level, a Lich Lord who prepares her spells no longer requires eight hours of uninterrupted study time. Instead, the time required to prepare a spell is equal to 10 rounds times the spell level. The total time to prepare a group of spells can not go over eight hours.
Lich Transformation: At first level, a Lich Lord obtains the Lich template. After obtaining it, she can not cast spells for 1d12 days. If the Lich Lord is ever killed, he takes control of the dead body nearest to his phylactery. If there is no dead body within one mile, the Lich Lord must wait for one to arrive.
Lich Familiar : If she so wishes, a Lich Lord can take her familiar into undeath as well. The familiar gains the undead type, as well as one template of the Lich’s choice. It still grants the same benefits as it did before, but the empathetic link with the Lich is now equal to the Lich’s prime requisite score (not bonus) in miles, and intelligent Familiars can communicate telepathically with their masters. If killed, the familiar is revived in 1d10 days in the same manner as the Lich.
Control Over Undead (Su): Starting at first level, a Lich Lord can attempt to control any undead whose total hit dice equals half her caster level. Those with hit dice equal to or less than her caster level minus eight are instantly controlled, but those with more are allowed a will save to resist. The lich can control a number of undead up to three times its prime requisite score at any one time. This power has a range of 1,000 feet per caster level. The lich loses control over any of her undead that leaves this area.
Bestow Quest (Su): Starting at second level, a Lich Lord can send her undead minions on quests outside of her control range once per day. Unintelligent undead can only follow commands with four or less steps, each step containing at most one adjective. If this ability is used on an intelligent undead, treat it as the wizard spell geas. The number of minions a Lich Lord can send on any one quest is equal to her prime requisite score.
Lich Lord Magic:At second level, a Lich Lord’s research into magic pays off, and she learns the following spells: Greater Detect Undead, Improved Chill Touch, Sinister Cantrip, Skeletal Hand, Destroy Undead, Feign Destruction, Lich Armor, Lich Touch, Mass Contagation, Persona of Death, Corruption, Sleep of Horror, Stench of Death, Bone Form, Bone Seizure, Sinister Surroundings, Zone of Despair, Bones of the Earth, Disrupt Dominion, Ghoul Lattice, Graft Flesh, Graft Item, and Wave of Death. If these spells were not already on her spell list, they are converted to spells of the appropriate level for her class before being added.
Power Ritual: At second level, a Lich Lord gains the ability to conduct Power Rituals. Optimum results of a power ritual occur at altitudes exceeding 5,000 feet. For every 1,000 feet below 5,000 (beginning at 4,999 feet), the possibility of any effects occurring - positive or negative - is reduced by 25%. (The ritual is ineffective at 1,999 feet or less.) First, the Lich Lord must construct a circle of bones, exactly 100 feet in diameter. Every living thing within the boundaries will be absorbed when the ritual is completed (no saving throws allowed). If there is the slightest error in the Lich Lord’s measurements, (simulated via a dc20 Knowledge Arcana check) the resulting explosion inflicts 20d10 points of damage upon everything within a 1-mile radius of the circle (reflex save for half vs. the Lich Lord’s caster level.) When a Lich Lord completes a power ritual, the Dungeon Master should roll the percentile dice. There is a base 75% chance that the ritual has been a complete success, and the Lich Lord chooses one of the enhancements below:
- Titanic Power Increase
- The Lich Lord is granted an influx of power that will persist for a period of 1d20 hours. During that time, any spells cast by the Lich Lord will have triple the normal effect. This includes range, duration, damage, and area of effect where applicable.
- Personal Mystical Shield
- The Lich Lord acquires a mystical, invisible aura that completely protects it from all physical harm for 1d20 days. She cannot be physically touched by any object, magical or nonmagical, while the aura exists. Exceptions are weapons with bonuses vs. undead, weapons with bonuses vs. enchanted creatures, and weapons with a +4 or greater magical bonus.
- Accelerated Learning
- The Lich Lord’s capacity to conduct research is greatly multiplied, enabling it to study arcane texts without a break over a period of one month and gain sufficient experience to raise it to the next Hit Die or level. During the month of study, the Lich Lord cannot be interrupted for more than one turn, cumulative, or the attempt is wasted.
If the result of the percentile roll indicates failure for the power ritual, the ritual has broken down. In this case, the Dungeon Master can roll on the table below:
- The Lich Lord falls into a coma, on the site of the power ritual, that lasts for 1d20 days. Once the coma passes, the Lich Lord suffers no ill effects.
- Power Depletion
- For 1d20 days, all activities the Lich Lord undertakes are less effective, determined by rolling percentile dice and assigning the resulting chance to spellcasting and all other actions. Furthermore, all physical and mental abilities (Armor Class, Hit Dice, morale, and the like) temporarily function at the percentage level of the roll. Psionic talents are unusable during this period as well.
- Extended Weakness
- The Lich Lord cannot employ any spell higher than 6th level for 1d20 days. Furthermore, the lich always moves last in combat and can attack only during every other round. Finally, it can regain hit points only through magical means.
- The Lich Lord dies, and its life essence returns to its phylactery.
- Complete Disintegration
- The Lich Lord is disintegrated and its phylactery is destroyed.
Lich Lord Abilities (Su):At third, fifth, seventh, and ninth levels, the Lich lord may gain a supernatural ability from the following list. These abilities are at will unless stated otherwise. All saving throws are equal to ten plus the highest level of spells the Lich Lord can cast.
- Animate dead by touch
- The Lich Lord is able to cause zombies and skeletons to rise with a mere touch. Such creatures are turned by clerics at a level equal to the Lich Lord that raised them, as long as the Lich Lord is within 200 feet of those undead. The Lich Lord may raise as many creatures as are available. All undead created in this fashion rise as 2 Hit Dice creatures that behave as common zombies and skeletons, except as noted above.
- Bone command
- The Lich Lord is able animate bone and shape it at will. With this ability, the Lich Lord can call up splinters of bones from anywhere bones are present and animate them into a protective barrier similar to the cleric spell blade barrier, except the damage inflicted is 10d8. The Lich Lord may also form bones into any structure it desires the only limit being the amount of bones available. Structures created in this manner are only as strong as the bones used, though some creatures may have very strong bones. The Dungeon Master should determine the structure integrity based on the campaign and scenario, the type and amount of bones available, and the resistance the bones offer. Inflicting 25 points of damage is enough to create a human-sized hole. Any structure - huts, arches, bridges, and so forth - can be created. The structure stands until it is destroyed or the lich commands it to disintegrate into its component parts. Structures created in this way cannot be dispelled magically, as the bones are actually melded into one another to make a solid mass.
- Chilling wind
- The Lich Lord is able to blow a freezing blast of wind in a cone 100 feet long and 50 feet wide at the base. The wind is short, lasting for only one round, but during that round a howling, screeching wail accompanies it that requires a will check for anyone within 60 feet of the cone to avoid being stunned for 1 round per caster level of the lich. Creatures within the area of effect of silence or similar spells do not need to check. The wind also freezes standing liquids and chills bottled liquids. Anyone caught within the cone of chilling wind suffers 1d10 points of cold damage. Any magical item designed to warm or otherwise protect a creature from cold (magical or otherwise) negates this damage. This ability can be used once every twenty rounds.
- The Lich Lord is able to produce a negative energy fire so cold that it inflicts 3d10 points of negative energy damage upon anything it touches. The lich may produce the Blackfire as glowing, blue-green flame that can be thrown as a ranged touch attack, or it can place the fire inside any skull. Flames placed within a skull last for 30 days unless a permanency spell is cast upon the flame. Anyone who touches the skull suffers damage. A Dispel magic spell extinguishes the flame.
- Control undead legion
- The Lich Lord is able to control a number of Hit Dice of undead creatures equal to its prime requisite score times 20. All undead of Hit Dice equal or less than the Lich Lord’s caster level minus four are automatically controlled, while those with more are immune to this special power. All undead involved must already be animated. The range of this ability is equal to the Lich Lord’s prime requisite score times 1,000 feet. The undead will respond to a limited form of telepathic command that allows Lich Lord to tell them to either move to a specific area and/or attack any creatures they encounter. Undead within hearing range of the Lich Lord may be commanded vocally, responding to more specific instructions.
- Doom gaze
- The Lich Lord is able to cause the instant death of a living person just by looking at him. The lich is successful if the creature fails a fortitude save. The victim may be resurrected, but only by a good cleric and not by potions or magical items. The victim need not look at the lich in order for the attack to be successful. The range of this attack is 90 feet. This ability is useable once per hour. DC=10+Charisma mod+lvl
- Dream manipulation
- The Lich Lord, if it knows the exact location of a living person, can infiltrate that person's mind and manipulate his dreams, turning them into nightmares of the her design if the person fails a will save. Pervading the dream is the face and gaze of the Lich Lord. The receiver of the dream manipulation is aware that his dreams were tampered with, but he is unable to prevent this. This is a mystical, rather than mentally oriented, phenomena- Sleepers affected by dream manipulation awaken having suffered any damage incurred during the nightmare. (Dungeon Masters may roleplay a nightmare or simply assess 3d10 points of damage upon any PC’s this gets used on.) Furthermore, the affected creature must make a will save upon awakening to avoid being confused for a number of rounds equal to the Lich Lord’s level. Furthermore, the creature is unable to sleep peacefully for 1d4 nights afterward. During this period of insomnia, no hit points are restored, the creature’s BAB drops by 1 per day, skills drop at 1 point per day, and can not memorize any 3rd-level or higher spell. Dream manipulation is not possible if the intended target is sleeping in holy ground such as a church or consecrated graveyard. The range of this ability equals to the Lich Lord’s prime requisite score in miles. This ability can be used once per day.
- Fool's feast
- By merely passing within 3 feet of openly displayed food, the Lich Lord can taint the edibles with a deadly, mystical poison. A creature that eats the food will die within a number of rounds equal to her Constitution score unless she rolls a successful fortitude save. The food gives off a magical aura if a detect magic spell is cast, and the effects of the mystical taint can be negated with a dispel magic or purify food and water spell. The food to be tainted must be out in the open, such as a vegetable stand or a buffet. A poisoned victim can be cured if she is healed by a cleric, if a neutralize poison or wish spell is cast, or an appropriate curative potion is used.
- Grasp of death
- If the Lich Lord makes a successful touch attack, the victim dies instantly unless he makes a fortitude save. The person can be resurrected, but only by a good priest casting the spell, not by potions, magical items, or other means. When the grasp of death is active, a nimbus of coruscating black flame surrounds the Lich Lord hands. This ability can be used once every ten rounds
Grasp of enfeeblement: When the Lich Lord touches a living person, 1d10 Strength points are lost for one hour, fortitude save for half. The Lich Lord cannot reduce a creature’s Strength two or more consecutive times with this ability, as its grasp does not have a cumulative damaging effect. However, the moment that a creature’s strength returns to him, he is once again vulnerable to the grasps of enfeeblement.
- Ignore Metal
- The Lich Lord is able to temporarily ignore the existence of metal with its physical body (including possessions) by magically putting itself slightly out of dimensional phase. It can walk through metal objects and walls of iron as if they were not there, and metal weapons inflict no damage except for bonuses conveyed by magic. (Since Strength aids the metal's effect, the damage bonus provided by a high Strength score is also negated). Metal armor also has no effect, with only magical bonuses conveying a better Armor Class. Dexterity, however, still has its normal effect on Armor Class. Spells cast by the Lich Lord while in this state interact with metal normally, however. Magical effects created by objects of metal that are used against the Lich Lord, such as wands made of metal, also have their normal effect. The Lich Lord can maintain this state for one round per level, and it can use this power once per day.
- The Lich Lord is able to harness the spell energies expended by other wizards and recreate the effect under its control. Any spell cast in the presence of the Lich Lord may be recast by the lich in the round immediately following without the expenditure of any of the Lich Lord’s carried spells. For example, a 7th-level mage casts fireball. The Lich Lord makes its normal saving throw and suffers damage accordingly, but also captures the magical energy, reshapes it into another fireball (at the 7th level of ability), and sends it back at the attacking party. The Lich Lord need not either know or carry a spell in order to imitate it. The Lich Lord must perform the imitation in the round immediately following the spell effect, or the magical energies dissipate and are lost. The Lich Lord can use this power ten times a day.
- Improved defense
- The Lich Lord may be hit only by weapons of +2 enchantment or better.
- Improved spellcasting
- The Lich Lord is able to cast double the amount of 1st- through 3rd-level spells normally available to it. She can also cast four times the usual amount of cantrips.
- The Lich Lord is able to project almost numbing pain through its eyes. Any living creature that makes eye contact with the lich suffers 2dl0 points of damage from severe pain unless a successful save vs. spell is made.
- The Lich Lord regenerates 5 hit points per round, regardless of circumstances or surroundings. The Lich Lord’s body can even regenerate after being reduced to ashes; however, if its ashes are scattered, it takes the Lich Lord one month to regenerate completely for every 10-foot area over which the ashes are scattered. If the Lich Lord’s phylactery is found and destroyed before the body can re-form, the ability to regenerate is neutralized and the Lich Lord is destroyed forever.
- Skull Scry
- The Lich Lord can see and hear activity through any skull. The skull must not be part of a living being or attached to a skeletal spine, nor can the skull be animated. The Lich Lord is able to see through skulls that are up to 10 times the Lich Lord’s prime requisite score in miles away.
- Voice of Maleficence
- The lich can wear down the willpower of anyone to whom it speaks for a duration of more than one turn or more. The voice of maleficence puts the victim into a hypnotic trance, granting complete cooperation from the prisoner. A victim can resist the voice of maleficence by making a will saving throw after one round. Failure results in a sleepy trance wherein the victim reveals any secret known. The saving throw may be rerolled every hour. For every hour the Lich Lord talks to a victim, a -1 penalty is applied to subsequent saving rolls, making it more difficult for the victim to resist as time passes.
- Vortex of Evil
- The Lich Lord is able, once a week, to summon any and all evil creatures and living persons of evil alignment to its side. This summons isn't overriding, but rather instills a sense of greed and curiosity that is difficult to ignore. The range of the vortex of evil is equal to the Lich Lord’s prime requisite score in miles. Those within this radius are drawn to the same location of the Lich Lord, though they are not sure why. They cannot state the reason for the attraction, but if asked, they will respond with a statement similar to: "I feel a great opportunity waiting for me". The summons can be ignored if they make a successful saving will saving throw.
Wizard Bonus Feat: At fourth, sixth, eighth and tenth levels a Lich Lord gains a bonus feat from the wizard bonus feat list.
Demilich Transformation:At eleventh level a Lich Lord gains the Demilich template at no cost.
Sail Unfettered(Su):At eleventh level a Lich Lord gains the ability to remove her spirit from her body and travel the plains. While her spirit is outside of her body, she may use plane shift at will as a supernatural ability, and is both invisible and invulnerable, but unable to cast spells or inflict damage. This ends when she returns to her body.
If a Lich Lord ceases to be a Lich by any means other than the Demilich Transformation, than she looses all of her Lich Lord spells and abilities. However, on becoming a lich again, she regains them at no cost.
Playing a Lich Lord
Combat: Lich Lords fulfill whatever role they had before they took levels in this class.
Advancement: After finishing this class, a Lich Lord is epic level and can do whatever she wants.
Resources: Lich Lords do not get along well, and the usual response to meeting another one is a disintegrate spell.
Lich Lords in the World
Lich Lords are generally found at the top of towers or at the bottom of tombs.
NPC Reactions: Unless the Lich Lord disguises itself with an illusion, NPCs will respond with fear and dread.
Lich Lord Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge Religion or Knowledge Arcana can research Lich Lords to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|11||Liches are undead spellcasters that unnaturally prolong their life.|
|16||Liches hide their souls in order to prevent themselves from being killed.|
|21||Lich Lords have many spells and powers unavailable to mortal spellcasters.|
|26||Very powerful Lich Lords become Demiliches.|
Lich Lords in the Game